Last week, we told you about the introduction of former Bronx Borough President Adolfo Carrion as this upcoming mayoral race’s third party presence. Chosen by the Independence Party, Mr. Carrion had made it clear that he was gunning for both Republican and Democratic support. And one of the ways he would do this was by attempting to get on the Republican primary ballot.
In that original story, it was stated that Mr. Carrion needed the support of three Republican county chairmen to make this happen and that seemed an unlikely case. The City’s GOP affiliate was not about to let this ex-Democrat walk right onto the ballet. But, of course, like with any good political event, things can change like that (snaps finger).
Yesterday, Capital NY reported that Robert Scarmadella, Staten Island’s Republican head, had stepped down from office. He was a firm supporter of Joe Lhota’s candidacy and refused to let Mr. Carrion enter the race. With him out, the probability of having this third party candidate on the GOP ballot in a few months just got turned up a notch – a threat that should not settle well with anyone over at the Lhota camp.
Mr. Scarmadella threw his weight behind Mr. Lhota because of his prominent standing in the polls next to City Council Speaker and likely foe Christine Queen. So, with him out, here’s why the outlook for Mr. Carrion shifts a bit:
Joseph S. Savino, the Republican chairman of Mr. Carrion’s old stomping grounds up in the Bronx, is totally fine with the third party candidate’s entry. And so is Craig Eaton, the chairman from Brooklyn. However, the Manhattan and Queen chairmen – David W. Isaacs and Phil Ragusa, respectively – are not. Instead, these two are vetting for billionaire grocer John Catsimatidis since, given, he has Bloomberg-level funds to support his own run.
As of now, the replacement for Mr. Scarmadella’s seat is unknown. But if this newcomer has the slightest leaning towards Mr. Carrion, the third party candidate is good to go on the ballot. And, for their electoral sake, it would make more sense for these chairmen to embrace the mayoral Nader.
We’ve mentioned before that, as his former deputy mayor, Mr. Lhota carries the Giuliani stigma; a shadow that has grown significantly over the years (or since Rudy ran for President in 2008 and failed pretty miserably). Republican voters may want a breath of fresh air for their party’s candidate – not an inheritor from the past.
And Mr. Catsimatidis? Well, having a billionaire background sets off Bloomberg alarms in voters’ heads. Also, let’s not forget his serious SuperPAC stumping for Mr. Romney, who’s location in the political scene is basically unknown at this point.
With that being said, allowing a somewhat moderate politician into your camp doesn’t exactly sound like the worst idea ever.
Advertising disclosure: We may receive compensation for some of the links in our stories. Thank you for supporting the Village Voice and our advertisers.